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PARK FOREST – State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex) encourages livestock producers and small meat and poultry plants suffering interruptions as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic to apply for $5 million in business recovery funding through the Illinois Department of Agriculture.  

“There is no doubt that Illinois farmers have suffered as a result of this public health crisis,” said Joyce, a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee. “Our agriculture economy is a driving force for our state, and it’s vital that we help these folks get back on track. These programs are a huge win for livestock farmers and small meat plants in Illinois.”

The COVID-19 pandemic drastically slowed livestock processing throughout the state, which forced farmers to hold animals for longer periods of time, resulting in higher input costs and cancelled, delayed or reduced sales.

Financial assistance is available through three programs administered by the Department of Agriculture. Individuals and businesses are only eligible to apply for one program, and applicants located in a disproportionately impacted area (DIA) will receive a 10% increase in funding. A list of DIA’s can be found here.

Online applications are available at agr.state.il.us. Applications will close on Oct. 31, 2020. Questions about this funding can be submitted to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Category: News

Flu shot with maskPARK FOREST – As flu season nears, State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex) is encouraging all Illinoisans, but especially older adults, to get a flu vaccine.

“Getting a flu shot this fall will be more important than ever as we continue to fight the spread of COVID-19,” Joyce said. “With flu season fast approaching, I am asking all residents to get a flu shot to help keep our community safe and healthy this winter.”

According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, older adults and people with chronic health issues are more likely to develop serious complications resulting from an influenza infection. While flu seasons are variable in their severity, people 65 years and older tend to be the most vulnerable. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an estimated 70-85% of seasonal flu-related deaths have occurred in adults 65 years and older.

Most insurance plans, including Medicare and Medicaid, cover one flu shot per flu season. It is always advisable to consult a health care provider before seeking medical treatment. Find a vaccine provider near you with Vaccine Finder.

Category: Press Releases

CUB Joyce

Category: Events

Webinar Flyer DCEO Suburban JoycePARK FOREST— To help businesses navigate the application process for the Business Interruption Grant (BIG) program, State Senator Patrick Joyce is urging business owners across the south suburbs to attend a free, informative webinar hosted by the Illinois Department of Economic Opportunity on Monday, Sept. 28 at 2 p.m.

“The BIG program will help our local businesses move one step closer to financial stability,” Joyce said. “I urge business owners to join this informative webinar to ensure they are completing their applications correctly and taking full advantage of available grants.”

Registration is required. Interested participants can click here to register.

Applications for Round 2 of the BIG program were launched last week. The latest round has allocated $220 million in assistance for movie theatres, performing arts venues, concert venues and other hard-hit businesses to help them stay afloat through this time of crisis and ensure they have the resources to open safely in the coming months.

The intention of the second round is to provide relief for all types of small businesses, with a focus on businesses located downstate and heavily distressed industries. Of the total funding, $70 million has been set aside for businesses in economically distressed communities that have been the most vulnerable to COVID-19.

“Small businesses are the back bone of our communities,” Joyce said. “During the pandemic, they have worked tirelessly to serve our communities and keep employees and customers safe. They have gone above and beyond to support us—I urge residents to return the favor and support them, too. Shop local as often as you can and please be patient, because we are all struggling to deal with this pandemic.”

Applications to the BIG program are open and can be found on the Illinois DCEO website. Joyce urges business owners who are unable to attend the Sept. 28 webinar to visit DECO’s website to sign up for another webinar or view a prerecorded version.

Category: Press Releases

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Springfield Office:
118 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
217.782.7419

District Office:
270 Main St.
Park Forest, IL 60466
708.756.0882
708.554.7276 (Text)